CHESSanity was founded in 2014 by FIDE Master Wesley Wang and National Master Warren Wang, two brothers hailing from Jericho, NY, in response to huge demands from Long Island chess parents for quality and collegiate chess lessons. In 2022, following the departure of Wesley to Harvard, the responsibility was passed to Candidate Master Weijie-Jay Li, another student from Jericho.
President Weijie-Jay Li
Presently a senior at Jericho High School, Jay moved to Jericho in 6th grade bringing with him a passion in chess. One of the top players of his age group, he has been consistently ranked top 100 for his age in United States. In addition to Chess, Jay is also a massive enthusiast in math. He is a qualifier for both USA Math Olympiad and USA Junior Math Olympiad, the highest level of mathematical contests in United States, including the title USAJMO Winner in 2021. He has received awards for his performance in many other mathematical competitions, such as 9th place individual in Princeton University Mathematics Competition and perfect individual score on New York State Mathematics League.
His interest also expands into the field of Computer Science. Along with two friends from Jericho High School, his team won the St. Joseph University's Programming Competition.
Fourth Place Team 2018 National High School Championship
Tied for First Place Individual 2018 National K-12 Grades Championship
Tied for Second Place Individual 2019 National K-12 Grades Championship
First Place Team World Amateur Team, U2000 Division, 2019
Fourth Place Individual 53rd Annual Greater New York Scholastic (2019)
Fifth Place Team 53rd Annual Greater New York Scholastics (2019)
Second Place Team 54th, 55th Annual Greater New York Scholastics (2020, 2021)
International Chess Federation (FIDE) Master Wesley Wang
Regarded by many as a jack of all trades, FM Wesley Wang, while extremely accomplished as a chess player, is thoroughly passionate in many other areas of the arts. As a film director, his recent film nothing, except everything (2023) stars David Mazouz (FOX's Gotham) and Lily Chee (Netflix's Daredevil), and is produced by the Oscar-shortlisted Scott Aharoni, whose films have premiered and won awards at Sundance, Tribeca, and SXSW. The film went on to win a Grand Jury Prize at the Oscar-qualifying Indy Shorts International Film Festival, and was featured in publications such as Variety, MovieMaker, and RogerEbert.com. Wesley's upcoming horror film, you are seen (2024), is endorsed by Blumhouse's Couper Samuelson (Whiplash, Get Out), and stars Avani Gregg, Vinnie Hacker, Ella Mendelsohn, and Brandon Soo Hoo.
It doesn't stop there, though: Wesley also enjoys singing and songwriting in his free time, which has blossomed into a sort of second career. His pop single "Runaway" has amassed over 70,000 streams so far, and he most recently opened for famous songwriter Nicky Youre at Harvard University, which Wesley currently attends. When peers are asked to describe him in three words, the most common responses are, "Creative, outgoing, and determined".
Wesley's Instagram page where he updates peers on his work: (Link)
Wesley's YouTube channel where he occasionally posts his work: (Link)
Chessplayer Scholar Award (annual award by US Chess Federation to 5 juniors for academic distinction, social impact and excellence in chess) - 2021
2nd Place (tied for 1st Place) - 2019 North American Youth Chess Championships (U18 Open)
Member - 2018 US Youth U16 Olympiad Chess Team
Member - 2021, 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, & 2016 All-America Chess Team
Member - 2019 National K-12 Grade Team Championships, 10th Grade Champion Team (Jericho High School); 2016 & 2015 National K-12 Grade Team Championships, 7th & 6th Grade Champion Teams (Jericho Middle School); 2017 SuperNationals VI (K-9 Section ) Champion Team (Jericho Middle School); 2016 National Junior High Championship (K-8 Section ) Champion Team (Jericho Middle School)
Member - 2017 AND 2016 U.S. Amateur Team East Champion Teams
Co-Champion - 2018 National K-12 Grade Championships, 9th Grade; 2017 SuperNationals VI (K-9 Section); 2016 National K-12 Grade Championships, 7th Grade; 2016 National Junior High Championship (K-8 Section)
2nd Place - 2016 North American Youth Chess Championships (U12 Open)
Champion - 2015 National K-12 Grade Championships, 6th Grade
3rd Place - 2018 National High School Championship, Championship Section
8 Time U.S. Qualifier - The World Youth and Cadets Championships (2014-2021)
National Master Warren Wang
Learning chess at the age of four and beginning to play in tournaments before he was six, NM Warren Wang is a well-seasoned and very experienced chess competitor. Presently coached by GM Gennady Sagalchik, Warren has evolved into one of the top players in his age group in the United States. He has been consistently ranked in the top 100 for his age group in the country, having achieved this feat every month since April 2007. Additionally, he has attained the National Master title: a feat achieved by only six other Long Island players before the age of 18 (including his brother). Outside of chess, Warren has many different hobbies, many of which revolve around sports. He is currently on University of Pennsylvania Team for both chess and badminton, and has also played high school's tennis varsity and travel soccer for many years. Besides playing sports, Warren also loves to watch sports, particularly soccer, where he is an avid supporter of Chelsea FC and the Belgian national team. His other interests include films (particularly The Shawshank Redemption and many Christopher Nolan pieces) and certain types of trivia.
Warren joined Meta in 2022 as a data scientist after he obtained his BS and MS degrees simultaneously from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, and Penn's School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.
Some of Warren's academic honors include being named as a U.S. Presidential Scholar Semifinalist (Link) and one of 15 Long Island's "Extraordinary Seniors" in 2018 by Newsday (Link).
From the Founders' Parents:
What sparked the idea of “Adopt a School” initiative was Warren’s few trips to Hempstead High School with his high school badminton varsity team. He was shocked at the tight security system there. As parents, we have found it improbable, if not impossible, to help the children truly understand how fortunate they are, who were born with a silver spoon in their mouths and have been pampered all their lives.
Ever prideful of their chess achievements, Warren and Wesley are also fully aware that many chess players out there could have done as well as they did if given the opportunities and resources they had received. Thus, one of CHESSanity's main programs, the “Adopt a School” initiative was born.
Warren and Wesley have been teaching a group of 5 to 8-years-old kids since the spring of 2014, in response to the huge demands from the parents in nearby neighborhoods. Most of these students have graduated and the results are astounding. It has not been an easy journey for us as parents, and especially more difficult for Warren and Wesley. Just like their peers, they prefer video games and other activities, such as tennis, soccer, and badminton to name a few, in preference to school, say nothing about teaching! Nevertheless, with exception to holidays, school breaks and a few large chess tournaments of their own, Warren and Wesley's Friday evenings since April 2014 have been spent in classrooms, on teaching chess.
Warren and Wesley go as far as to loathe purchasing beverages from a vending machine and choose to bring water from home instead. It takes a big heart to donate such hard-earned money, especially money earned on a Friday night, to a charitable cause. As parents, we are very proud and feel much blessed.
We are incredibly grateful that Warren and Wesley can utilize their chess skills and make some meaningful impact upon the communities. We are very happy to see that the baton has passed on to new generation of chess players and leaders, who are continuing to carry on their legacy.